Norwalk Sexting Lawyer
If you or your child is facing criminal charges because of sexting, you need skilled legal representation to reach a positive resolution while avoiding serious repercussions. A Norwalk sexting lawyer could defend your case and help protect your future prospects.
Why is “Sexting” a Criminal Offense?
When it occurs between consenting adults, exchanging sexually explicit messages and selfies is a completely legal activity. However, when it occurs between an adult and a teenager or two teenagers who are both under the age of consent, “sexting” technically constitutes the creation and distribution of child pornography.
However, Connecticut state legislature distinguishes “possessing or transmitting child pornography by minor” as an offense separate from other child pornography charges. Codified in Connecticut General Statutes §53a-196h, this offense entails a minor under 16 sending a sexually explicit depiction of themselves to another minor under 18 via electronic means.
Importantly, both parties involved in this exchange may face equivalent criminal charges under this section of the Connecticut penal code. In other words, it is just as unlawful for a minor to create and distribute child pornography depicting themselves as it is for a minor to knowingly receive and retain such a depiction.
What are the Penalties for Sexting Between Minors?
“Sexting” between minors is a class A misdemeanor that could be punishable by a year of jail time and a $2,000 fine. However, those penalties would only apply if the minor were to be tried and convicted as an adult, which rarely occurs.
Instead, these cases typically proceed through the juvenile court system. An adjudication of guilt might result in sanctions like:
- A formal warning
- A short period of probation
- Community service requirements
- A maximum of 18 months in juvenile detention
An attorney experienced in handling juvenile sexting cases in Norwalk could advise a defendant and their family on navigating the legal system.
How Do You Contest Sexting Allegations?
A juvenile offense can have significant implications for a young person’s academic and occupational options in the future. Fortunately, it is often possible to contest sexting charges and mitigate the potential repercussions with help from an experienced lawyer in Norwalk.
For instance, the receiving party may have an affirmative defense to child pornography possession charges outlined in C.G.S. §53a-196g. This defense may be applicable if they possessed two or fewer illicit images, immediately attempted to delete the images, and/or notified authorities upon becoming aware of them. In other situations, a comprehensive defense strategy could involve challenging the notion that the exchange was reciprocal or highlighting a minor’s clean juvenile record.
Facing juvenile or criminal charges for “sexting” can be a traumatic experience for any teenager, as well as one that could cause significant damage to their reputation and future prospects. As such, it is important to take allegations of this nature seriously and seek help from experienced legal counsel as soon as possible.
Discuss Your Legal Options with a Norwalk Sexting Attorney
A compassionate Norwalk sexting lawyer could provide the help your family needs to move past this difficult experience and mitigate the potential consequences. Call today and click here to learn more about how the Law Offices of Mark Sherman can help you.